cctv system


If you’re thinking of installing CCTV at your business premises, or have done so already, you’re in good company. Thousands of businesses and organisations from factories to schools are enjoying the many benefits that CCTV can offer. This is mainly thanks to advances in technology that has made monitoring in the workplace cheaper and easier than ever before.

There are a variety of reasons businesses decide to install CCTV cameras. They can help to remotely and cost effectively safeguard and monitor your business, staff and property. Cameras can also ensure that health and safety rules are being complied with, prevent misconduct and improve productivity.

When installing CCTV, business owners must comply with legislation, as unwarranted use of CCTV has led to tighter regulation under the Protection of Freedoms Act.

There are a number of steps that employers need to follow that can also help to develop a relationship of trust with their employees. Firstly, they should carry out an impact statement to justify the use of CCTV. This statement should identify the purpose and negative impact of any monitoring, plus highlight any obligations the employer has once monitoring starts (such as notifying employees etc.)

Once an impact statement is in place, staff must be told about the CCTV monitoring and why it is being done. This could be done via an employment contract and signs must be displayed on the premises. Often it is useful to have a code of conduct policy that covers workplace monitoring.

At this stage employers must be clear on the levels of privacy an employee should expect, for example where the monitoring will take place, explain how the CCTV will be used and where the footage will be stored. Unless told otherwise, an employee can safely assume the CCTV is used for security purposes only. If the CCTV is set up to detect crime, it cannot be used to monitor staff performance. If it is to be used for any other reason, such as performance monitoring, staff must be told at the outset.

Those involved with the monitoring must be made aware of their confidentiality obligations and follow the Data Protection Act to ensure they act responsibly. People with access to the recordings should be limited and recordings should not be kept longer than necessary. Safeguards must also be in place to prevent unauthorised access to the security footage.

Finally, employees should be given the opportunity to voice their concerns about CCTV in confidence.

The Information Commissioner’s Office has written a code of conduct which is available at if anyone would like to find out more about this issue.

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